House District 16 candidate Stephanie Vigil addresses student employee concerns

At an Oct. 6 meeting, the Student Government Association senate heard a presentation from Democratic candidate Stephanie Vigil who is running for election to the Colorado House of Representatives for District 16. 

Vigil explained her platform and what she intends to do for students at UCCS if she wins office. One of her main priorities for students is to fight for more competitive student wages and better scheduling for student campus workers.

“It’s one of those things where people don’t feel like it’s a real job because it’s the job you are working while you are in school — but a job is a job. It should pay you a fair competitive wage, it should pay you enough to cover your expenses,” Vigil said. She wants to ensure that all campus workers feel their employer is representing their interests.

To make UCCS students feel heard in politics, Vigil promised to establish a communication line between her and SGA while in office. “I want to make sure that anything that affects college students at this university that you have a path to come testify and make sure that you are heard,” Vigil said.

Other issues Vigil is running on relate to housing and emergency. People are “really feeling the pinch to keep paying rent [and] afford a first home,” Vigil said. Additionally, Vigil discussed paying teachers more, the importance of addressing climate change and protecting the right to vote.

One senator asked Vigil about her thoughts on Colorado health care. Vigil noted the current policy is a “step in the right direction,” but she is looking for a more universal health care plan. “It [the current system] does not create a true public option that people can automatically opt into. … I consider health care a basic human right. It is indistinguishable from other rights,” Vigil said.

Another priority Vigil discussed was the importance of political involvement. She encouraged the senate to get involved in local politics to represent issues they feel are important.

“Be thinking about what could you do. There are boards you can get on, even city council is a bit more accessible than some bigger offices. … You don’t have to be in a special class anymore, when this country was first founded you kind of did have to be in that special class, and for us to not be in that environment anymore and to not take advantage of it… we’re just leaving the power on the table,” Vigil said.

Photo caption: Guest speaker Stephanie Vigil is running for the House District 16. Photo by Meghan Germain.